December Graduates Can Expect a More Challenging Job Market

December 14, 2008

COLUMBIA, SC – December 12, 2008 – Like much of the rest of the country, recruiting through the Career Center this fall was flat for on-campus recruiting and hiring in general. The presence of recruiters on campus was practically the same as last year: 87 visits this fall versus 88 for last fall. While on-campus recruiting was flat, the university experienced a greater number of employer registrations at career fairs. During fall 2007, there were 171 companies at the university’s career events; this fall, 200 companies participated. 

“While employers have reduced hiring, there continue to be opportunities available for a variety of industries,” said Tom Halasz, director of the Career Center. “We saw strong hiring in engineering, computer science and accounting this fall and anticipate a wide variety of employers returning to campus in the spring to hire interns.” 

In light of volatile financial markets this fall, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) re-polled employers that had provided hiring projections in August. The result: compared to earlier projections, responding employers expect to decrease hiring levels by 1.6 percent. NACE reports that decreased hiring was experienced across all industries and that the only sector reporting increased hiring was government; manufacturing and professional services hiring were flat. The NACE report, released Oct. 22, noted that employers should “plan to keep a watchful eye on those hiring needs, so they can shift gears if necessary.” 

Halasz said that now is the time for all students graduating this year or for students thinking about internships for the summer to get busy. 

“In good and challenging times, utilizing a variety of resources and developing a sound plan are the keys to success,” Halasz said. 

For more information on the University of South Carolina’s Career Center, visit the Web site: